Meegahakiula's Community News

Coronavirus (COVID-19) impact on World Vision operations

In support of public health recommendations outlined by the World Health Organization, some sponsorship program activities have been temporarily suspended due to COVID-19. Activities may include sponsor queries and correspondence, sponsor visits, gift notifications and gift deliveries. These temporary suspensions may affect the information you receive from us in the coming weeks and months.  
Learn more about our response to COVID-19.

Thanks to the generous support of Canadians, we’ve started work to improve the well-being of children and families in this community. These are a few of the areas we will focus on this next year:

The Meegahakiula community is located in a rural area of Sri Lanka. It is home to almost 20,000 people. Most families depend on local resources for survival and more than 79% are farmers. However, constant droughts have led to food shortages and children often go hungry. When crops fail to grow during the dry season, people earn income by collecting and selling firewood. This has led to deforestation and is quickly depleting the area's natural resources.

The most vulnerable children often come from families in isolated areas without roads. The steep terrain makes it extremely hard to access health care when sick or pregnant, and children struggle to get to schools that are far away. Although educators recognize issues, such as lack of safe drinking water and clean washrooms, little has been done to address them. As a result, many students drop out.
Thanks to the generosity of Canadian sponsors like you, life in Ksach Kandal  has improved. Your support will have a lasting impact for years to come. Let’s celebrate these accomplishments!  

Child Protection
  • 10 child parliaments are empowering young people to advocate for their rights and participate in community decisions
  • 125 community members learned about child rights and protection issues to help ensure children's safety and participation
  • 19 community groups are in place to protect children by monitoring and reporting child rights violations
  • 422 young people are participating in community decisions and advocating for the protection and wellbeing of children
  • 4,707 children received the resources they need to learn including school fees, supplies, books and uniforms
  • 55 children were trained in essential life skills such as critical thinking, self-esteem and communication
  • 68 people are better equipped to protect themselves from disasters and respond to emergencies
  • 11 savings groups are helping children and adults save money and access loans to grow businesses or cover basic expenses
  • 143 people received vocational, business and finance training, improving their opportunities to earn a steady income
  • 172 people are part of savings groups, helping them meet their financial needs and access small loans
  • 180 farmers learned techniques to improve crop and livestock production to better provide for their children and families
Water, Sanitation and Hygiene
  • 385 community members are benefitting from improved latrines and have better access to sanitation
  • 77 new latrines are granting families better access to sanitation and helping to protect children from illness
*Results achieved from October 2017 to September 2018
Child Protection
  • 27 child protection meetings and advocacy initiatives were led by community members, helping to inform the government on ways to keep children safe.
  • 15 community groups and individuals worked together on advocacy efforts, encouraging the government to address child protection and safety issues.
  • 266 girls and boys are now registered in children groups
  • 49 children took actions to help end violence against girls and boys, raising awareness in the community about protecting children from harm and abuse.
  • 5177 orphans and vulnerable children, aged 0-17, received free basic support
  • 108 parents attended training to learn how to discipline their children without physical violence, so more girls and boys are safer from abuse.
  • 9 training opportunities were provided for community partners, equipping them to improve the lives of children.
  • 17 community partners and groups made contributions that improve the well-being of children, helping to build a safer community for boys and girls.
  • 120 people got information about World Vision and how it operates, learning its priority to keep children safe and how to share feedback or concerns.
  • 18 community partners were actively engaged in the feedback and response system, working more effectively to safeguard and address children's needs.
  • 1 local level advocacy initiative was conducted
Community Development
  • 10 partners completed micro projects to address child well-being issues
  • 9 community-based organizations developed a disaster risk reduction plan
  • 3 disaster risk reduction plans were implemented by the community
  • 14 farmers have adopted improved cultivation methods
  • 9 households increased production volumes
  • 14 producers were linked with local markets
  • 85 households incorporated disaster risk reduction measures into their livelihoods
  • 78 farmers received seeds, livestock, tools or agricultural equipment, helping increase their production, income and support for their children.
  • 13 local communities with an up-to-date disaster preparedness plan, helping ensure that more girls and boys will be prepared for and protected in a crisis.
  • 61 small business owners attended business management training, so they can learn skills to help them operate a business and earn a sustainable living.
  • 263 adults learned better ways to collectively produce, harvest or process the products they sell, helping them earn more to support their children.
  • 100 families started a small business, so more girls and boys can have their basic needs met by an increase in their family's income.
  • 182 women and men are active members of a local savings group, helping them to become more financially stable.

*Results achieved from October 2018 to September 2019
To ensure children can access and benefit from quality education, World Vision will assist the community to:
  • Train teachers and provide them with better educational resources for their students.
  • Develop partnerships between parents, caregivers, and school committees.

Health Care
With the partnership of Canadian sponsors and the community, World Vision will work to:
  • Improve nutrition practices and bring malnourished children back to health.
  • Provide more families with access to clean drinking water and proper sanitation facilities.
  • Increase availability of health services to the community and help staff treat patients more effectively.
  • Boost family diets by creating home gardens and supporting crop production.

Child Protection
To ensure children and youth enjoy a safe and protected environment, World Vision will work to:
  • Strengthen ability of children, community members, and the government to advocate for child protection issues.
  • Develop youth groups and provide opportunities for young people in leadership and skills development.
  • Create support systems for children who are at-risk of abuse or have had their rights violated.
  • Monitor and follow up with children in the community to ensure they are protected and safe.

Economic Development
To ensure parents in Meegahakiula can provide for their families, World Vision will partner with the community to:
  • Increase job training opportunities and share life skills with the youth
  • 15.0% of children were suffering from acute malnutrition in 2017 decreasing from 18.0% in 2013, this condition is called wasting and can impair the imune system, leading to increased severity of infectious diseases
  • 25.0% of children were underweight according to their age, as a result of malnutrition in 2017 decreasing from 31.0% in 2013.
  • 96.0% of children 12-59 months old were vaccinated to protect themselves against diphtheria, tetanus, whooping cough and measles in 2017 increasing from 95.0% in 2013.
  • 27.0% of families were using improved drinking water sources in 2017 increasing from 15.0% in 2013, decreasing the risk of waterborne diseases

Explore Meegahakiula

current conditions

To protect the privacy of children, this map shows only the general area of the community, not the exact location.

The needs in Meegahakiula

The quality of education in Meegahakiula's preschools is low. Teachers are often absent and have no standard syllabus to follow. The community lacks understanding about the importance of early childhood care and development. As a result, preschools don't monitor attendance.

Students in higher grades also struggle to access quality education and instruction. In rural schools, there are few teachers who are trained in core subjects, leading to gaps in information. School committees aren't active or organized and the community does not generally prioritize education.

Health Care
The health status of children in the community is worrying. Low family income and lack of information prevents parents from forming healthy habits, such as growing their own fruits and vegetables. As a result, children and mothers are malnourished.

Limited access to health care, clean, safe drinking water, and proper washrooms leaves children vulnerable to sickness and infection. Teenage pregnancy and low birth weight are also common issues.

Child Protection
Protecting the rights of youth in Meegahakiula is vital. Most community members are unaware of children's rights and cannot advocate on their behalf. Youth lack opportunities to learn how to defend themselves and promote important causes.

No organized children's groups exist and there are few safe spaces for children. This prevents them from playing and socializing with one another in healthy ways. Youth also have few chances to participate in community conversations.
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Life cycle of a sponsorship community

Meegahakiula,  is in Phase 1

PHASE 1: Building the foundation

With local leaders, we assess the community's needs and resources, plan projects to provide long term solutions. Sponsorship and development opportunities begin.